Ruth Thompson

I knew a Voice in poems, streets of another city, muscular and quick, blown by a brisk herring-colored Atlantic air, far from my own ottery rainfalls. Streets where I might wander – ah, marvelous! – but the Maker, although not retired from his creation, certainly apart from me.

Then he spoke by proxy, exciting the cloud where he was hidden in my lover’s emails, Logos-Apollo of Delphi-sur-Starbucks. Oh, he put me on my mettle, this presented Voice, with his questions, with his coolness, and I raised a flaming sword, sometimes. For I would have my garden.

Then at last the man himself, not fearsome at all but full of delight, and the air alive with the comet tails of thought. At South Point, Hawaii, blown by wind that has crossed more ocean than any other wind on earth, he is the same boy who set out west to the Pacific with a change of clothes in a knapsack. It’s the very edge he stands on, sturdy and exposed, he who Jacob-wrestles wind to form.

And we sit around the table. The power has gone out and the candles flicker and he is reading from All of Us Here in that voice a bit hoarse, unpretentious, that draws back and allows them space, ah, poor white ghosts in the street, on the bus…. Under the brief tent of candlelight the conjectured dimension manifests and they speak and move, and for a moment we all see -- see as he must see! – and our eyes, our glittering eyes, are gay.